Baby Steps Lead to Success
Wednesday, July 11, 2012
I don't know if it will help to know my healthy lifestyle change process, but just in case here it is:
I used to make these lofty, huge, life-sweeping goals--and then I didn't make some or all of them and I quit. I was well intentioned but life made it difficult to focus and I probably wasn't ready to make this a priority. (This was just me, this may be you or not even close to you).
This time I was older, wiser, and more determined to be a healthier me. I made small changes that I could live with. First, I started with my nutrition. I healthy much of the time, but I ate way more than I should and some things weren't as healthy as I thought. I started tracking here and did very well. I learned what was better for me to eat and tried to replace the things that I could. I learned what I could eat at the places we went out to eat at and how much of it to eat. I rarely eat salad, but I like to eat fruit and veggies. I don't say I CAN'T eat something. If I don't eat it it's because I'd rather spend my calories elsewhere. It just isn't worth it sometimes. However, I do eat pizza, brie (I love cheese), and ice cream. I just eat better portions of it. Oh, and I totally ate cotton candy a couple weeks ago (until I thought I'd get sick, lol). I track everything and make sure I am in my range every day. I learned SO much from doing that.
So, then I decide--after tracking became a habit and easy for me, so I'm ready to add something new--that I need to add more fitness into the plan. I start with parking further away from where I need to go and using the stairs instead of the elevator. When I use the restroom at work I use the one on the top floor. I started with just walking up them and slowly I was able to walk up and now I run up. The goal is to be out of breath (but not overly so) by the time I'm at the top. I just slowly increased it. Now I walk/jog 3 or so miles at a time and do Pilates for an hour or so a week. My goal is to slowly increase the jog so I'm jogging about 3 miles at a time, and then I'm going to do a 5k :) I increase slowly because I don't want to add too much so that I injure myself or find a reason to stop totally. I find it's very easy to let myself down, so I try to get myself going by getting others going. I have several people I walk/jog with so that I maximize how often and how much I workout (because my goals may not align with others' goals). If I know I will be walking faster than the person with me, I bring weights so I slow myself down and still get a workout in and I don't frustrate my walking buddy because their fitness level isn't up to mine.
My point is: take baby steps in your healthy lifestyle. Take one or two until you have your balance and then take a couple more. Keep it up, add to it. If you fall down, get back up. Right now, don't wait. Take a couple more steps. Before you realize it you'll be running and it won't be with such effort and concentration. It will begin to be automatic--a habit.
Even if it didn't help anyone (and I hope it helped at least one) it did help me by reflecting on my process so far. I've got a ways to go, but one thing is certain: I WILL get there :)